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for water was still
the face of the whole earth; and he stretched forth his hand and took her, and placed 10 her by him in the ark. And he stayed yet other seven
days, and sent forth the dove again out of the ark. 11 Then the dove came to him at eventide, and behold a
fresh olive-leaf was in her mouth; then Noah knew that
ark, ous dvéorpeyer (did not return), which the Septuagint gives instead of the ordinary reading, “flew to and fro.”
[Professor Tuch notices an analogy between the description of the first discovery of land in the text, with the sending out of the raven and the dove from time to time; and the custom of sailors in ancient times taking birds with them upon a voyage, when they were not in possession of more accurate means to steer by, in order to find the way to land by their assistance. Thus Pliny remarks of the Hindoos, in his Natural History (vi. 24), that when at sea their sailors do not take observations of the stars, nor are they acquainted with the North Pole (äpktol, Diod. Sic. ii. 35), but they take birds with them, and send them out very frequently, and follow their course, when they are in search of land. Noah sending out birds may also be considered as resembling the Chaldæan Xisuthrus. (Tuch's Commentary on Genesis, pp. 173, 174.) With respect to this latter hero, Berosus, in his history of the Chaldees, says, that when the flood decreased, “Xisuthrus sent out some birds, which, as they did not return on the third day, caused him to know that the deluge was at an end." See the account of the Asiatic narratives of the Flood in Count Björnstjerna's work on the theogony of the Hindoos, and on their systems of philosophy and cosmogony, p. 140. London: 1844.)
Verse 11.-Many commentators have remarked that the olivetree is common in eastern countries, and that it remains green for a long time under water. Taraf is properly to be understood only as 'fresh,' or 'green', (tarah', in Arabic, having the same
12 the waters had gone down from off the earth. And he
stayed yet other seven days, and sent forth the dove, but 13 she returned not again unto him. And it came to pass,
in the six-hundredth and first year, on the first day of the first month, the waters dried up from off the earth,
and Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, 14 and behold the land was dry. And in the second month,
on the seven-and-twentieth day of the month, was the
earth completely dry. 15 16 Then God spake unto Noah and said, Go forth from
the ark, thou and thy wife, and thy sons, and thy sons'. 17 wives with thee. Bring forth with thee all animals
which are with thee, of all flesh, of birds and of cattle, and every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth,
that they may move upon the earth, [and] that they 18 may be fruitful and multiply upon the earth. So
Noah went forth, and his sons, and his wife, and his 19 sons' wives with him. All the animals, all the creeping
things and all the birds, all that move upon the earth,
after their kinds, went forth out of the ark. 20 And Noah builded an altar for Jehovah, and took of
all clean cattle and of all clean birds, and offered burnt
meaning, according to Michaelis, Gesenius and Rosenmüller,) and the Septuagint is in error in translating it as a dried twig, κάρφος. We
We can scarcely imagine that the accessory idea of the olive-branch being a symbol of peace presented itself to the nar-. rator's mind. Besides the object here seems to have been to describe the gradual retirement of the waters ; k'allu, (verse 8) the waters were abated,' charěbu (verse 13) they subsided ; and then, in the next verse (14), the earth is said to be completely dry, yaběshah.
Verses 20-22.—The general turn of these verses, even without 21 offerings on the altar. Then Jehovah smelled the sweet
savour, and Jehovah said in his heart, I will not any more curse the ground for man's sake; for the imagi
nation of man's heart is evil from his youth, and I will 22 not again smite every living thing, as I have done. So
long as the days of the earth continue, seed (time) and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night shall not cease.
reference to the name Jehovah occurring in them, affords sufficient evidence of their being the composition of a different author; there are also in these additional verses clear indications of the Israelitish compiler, for to him it probably appeared that the religious character of Noah had not been very prominently brought forward, and hence he represented Noah as building an altar “ for Jehovah,”—in order that the worship of Jehovah might be referred back to this patriarch of the human race'. Noah (in verse 20) makes an offering of all clean animals, by which in burnt offerings were principally meant oxen, sheep, rams and doves; and it may have been not without a view to this offering that the author had previously mentioned clean animals in chapter vii. verse 2. The savour of the sacrifice is represented as being so pleasing to Jehovah, that he makes a vow to himself? (v. 21) not to curse the grounds any more on account of the sins of ment, and not to interrupt the course of nature, which last expression refers to the seasons and rainy periods in Palestine. Reiach hannichoach (a savour of sweetness) is extremely sensuous, and was therefore referred by Ephraem 5 to purity of heart: it is an expression belonging to the sacrificial worship in its complete state in the Levitical lawo, and is
1 See chap. iv. ver. 26.
on Yéçer (imagination): see Gen. vi. 5. 5 See V. Lengerke, p. 207. 6 Levit. i-9; ii. 12; xxvi. 31, and many other passages.
Then God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto 2 them: Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the earth. And
the fear and dread of you be upon all the beasts of the earth and upon all the birds of the heaven, upon every
thing that creepeth upon the earth, and upon all the fish 3 of the sea : into your hand are they given. Everything
that moveth and is alive shall be for food to you; even 4 as the green [leaves] of the herb, I give you all. Only
not employed anywhere else except by the contemporary writer Ezekiel'. At a later period (in Ezra and Daniel), the reference to a savour entirely disappears, and only nichochin (sweet odours) remain?.
CHAPTER IX., verse 4.—The construction of the sentence, “ Only the flesh, in whose life is its blood,” (where damo, blood, cannot be called an interpretamentum, as Maurer supposes) is perfectly clear to the Hebrew, and becomes so to us if we transpose the words thus, “Only the flesh, in which is the blood, as the life thereof;" for in this passage there is no allusion to the savage custom of eating the flesh of living animalss; but the blood alone is prohibited, because the seat of life is in it, as Josephus even at his early period of criticism correctly understood :αιμα......έν τούτω γαρ έστιν η ψυχή4. This belief in the vitality
1 Ezek. vi. 13; xvi. 19; xx. 41.
2 Ezra vi. 10; Daniel ii. 46. 3 Rosenmüller, Schol. and his Alt. und Neues Morgenl. (Ancient and Modern East), i. 39, 309.
4 Josephus Antiq. 1. 3. 8. [The Deity is there represented by Josephus as giving the following directions to Noah on this subject, after the deluge: “I require you to abstain from shedding the blood of men, and to keep yourselves pure from murder, and to punish those that commit any such thing. I permit you to make use of all other living creatures at your pleasure, and as your appetites lead you ; for I have made you lords of them all, both of those that walk on the land, and those that swim in the waters, and of those that fly in the regions of the air on high, excepting their blood, for therein is the life.”]
the flesh, in whose life is its blood, shall ye not eat. 5 But I will only require your blood for your life; of
every beast will I require it, and of man, [even) of his
of blood was held by many of the ancients'; in Homer, the Shades thirst after blood, since by means of it they are called forth out of Erebus and regain the faculty of speech”. Hence [on account of its supposed vitality) the taste of blood is prohibited in the Levitical law, under punishment of death, with the express explanation, “the blood is the life.” In fact eating blood was regarded in Leviticus as tantamount to murder+ [and was to be punished with death]; and for a similar reason [on account of its vitality], blood was held sacred to the gods in the sacrifices of all nations.
Verse 5.—This verse is closely connected with the preceding one: permission is given (ver. 4.) for the shedding of the blood of animals for purposes of food, and there is no allusion to unclean animals; but the shedding of man's blood is prohibited, because, according to the general Asiatic as well as Greek notions 5, this act entailed the revenge of blood. The shedding of human blood alone, and not that of the blood of animals, should, for the interest of mankind, be avenged6; and even an animal was doomed to perish if it killed a man?, which we may observe alludes in a beautiful manner to Genesis i. 26. [with reference to the dominion of man over the inferior animals]. ’Ish'achiv (man, his kinsman) is interpreted in a variety of ways, but it simply means the kinsmans, as family revenge was carried into effect by the hand of the kinsman.
1 Plutarch, Placit. Philos. 4. 5; “Empedocles considers the soul to be blood poured into the heart.” Cicero, Tusc. Quæst. 1. 9; Diog. Laert. 7, 159, and Menage; Sprengel, Beiträge zur Geschichte der Medecin (Contributions to the History of Medicine), i. 3.
2 Odyss. xi. 36, 97, 147; Köster, Erläuterungen, p. 23. 3 Deut. xii. 23.
4 Levit. iii. 17; xvii. 10, 11, 14; Acts xv. 20. 5 Diodor. iv. 31. Pausanias, v. l.
9 Darash (require) is especially applied to the revenge of blood, Psalm ix. 12, and elsewhere.
7 Compare Exodus xxi. 28, &c. 8 Masculine sing. Compare Gen. xiii. 8.